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Auditor meets with Foundation over agency-owned boats

BILOXI — State Auditor Stacey Pickering has met with Mississippi Department of Marine Resource Foundation board members concerning boats owned by the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (DMR).

The board agreed to meet within the next seven to 10 days to discuss transferring ownership of two boats that were being leased from the DMR Foundation by DMR. Total taxpayers assets in these two boats, including upgrades, equaled $1,074,517.97 identified to date, according to release from Pickering’s office.

“I appreciate the DMR Foundation board members being cooperative and working towards a process to turn the boats over to DMR,” said Pickering. “It is our office’s responsibility to protect the taxpayers’ assets in these boats and to continue to hold those accountable who misuse taxpayer money.”

This is the initial action of the civil portion of this ongoing investigation into misuse of taxpayer funds within DMR and has no relation to the potential criminal aspects of this case.

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